DOI: 10.1093/bjs/znad258.037 ISSN:

630 Diversifying a Surgical Workforce Starts from Creation of an Inclusive Medical School Application Process

N Asim, S Ravinthiran, A Sureshkumar
  • Surgery



The Royal College of Surgeons from England identified 20% of their surgical leadership were from BAME communities. This underrepresentation precedes core surgical training, stemming from unique barriers to medical school admissions encountered by students from widening participation (WP) backgrounds. Recent application data states only 12% of total medical applicants identified as BAME.

St George’s Medical Education Society aims to equalise the platform by supporting aspiring widening participation medics via the formal establishment of our ‘WP Zone’ in 2021.


Over two years, we have taught these students over different elements of the medicine application through outlets such as social media, interview preparation webinars and an in-person mock multiple mini-interview (MMI).

Feedback forms using 5-Point Likert Scales measured changes in student confidence before and after sessions.


Combined engagement on social media rose by 40% upon introduction of WP posts. There was an increase of 53% observed in the subsequent month during inauguration of interview webinars and the mock MMI.

The MMI webinar (n = 169) demonstrated a 20% mean increase in understanding. Furthermore, 57% of students found the support by our WP zone more helpful than individual school resources. The in-person mock MMI session (n = 68) displayed a 50% increase in students feeling more prepared for MMI interviews.


The above results demonstrate the WP zone making positive strides in creating an inclusive medicine application process. This has implications not only for increasing representation in surgery but strives to tackle structural injustices that prevent administration of optimal health care in minorities.

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